2013 Assignment Two: Vision Statement and Image

This is the vision statement part of your Project 52.
A vision statement is not an “elevator pitch”.
A vision statement is not a marketing message.
A vision statement is not a ‘tagline’.
A vision statement is not necessarily shared with the world.
This vision statement is about you. Right now.
It is about your vision of the world, and how your photography fits into it.

Image review.

Explanation video.

What do you want to do photographically?

See related post by Chase Jarvis

Tell us with a single paragraph what you want to be able to do with your images. Tell us what you do without telling us you are a photographer. Accompany that message with a single image taken around your home. Inside or out, make a photograph that adds insight into the mission statement you will be writing.

Don’t get overly flowery, just write down what you want to do.

A few examples.
“I am a story teller. I illustrate the times in which we live and try to put it into a context of meaning with images of ordinary people in extraordinary situations. I strive to enlighten each and every one of us by portraiture that reveals more than the surface reflects.”

“I capture that moment between reality and fantasy with my images. A tiny sliver of time caught for eternity, and worthy of notice, is what I work toward with every image I take.”

“Nekkid Hott Chicks in heels, wrapped in caution tape on railroad tracks…”
OK, maybe not that one. Seriously not that one.

A vision statement, even a rudimentary one, can make a huge difference when you are shooting.

It reminds you what you want to do. It helps the focus of the image be what you want it to be. It can help put you back into the position of creating instead of taking. And even those photographers who ‘find and take’ images have a vision that helps them do the finding.

By keeping my personal vision statement in mind, I am able to see the images that fit, they are more easily ‘revealed’ to me. It is when one loses sight of their purpose that the deserts of creative hell become more visible. Creative block happens when one forgets their personal vision, and begins to either wander aimlessly.

Creative burnout can happen when photographers stop doing the personal work they love and concentrate totally on the commercial aspects of it. The commercial doesn’t end up squaring with their personal vision, and the whole focus of their photography becomes muddled.

Now. MAKE A PHOTOGRAPH that illustrates your vision statement. It doesn’t have to be technically difficult. Do not think you have to do anything in any way that is prescribed for you. You do not have to use strobes or natural light or desk lamps… this is NOT a technical exercise. It is a vision exercise. This image should be very much a personal one.

It should be done in or just outside your home. It is not a ‘big shot’, it is YOUR shot. If you have never worked on a vision statement before, this is where we look inside and work it out. The good news is there is NO wrong way to do your vision statement. Unless it is wrong for you, it makes no difference to anyone else. It is YOURS.

As for the photograph… think long and hard about it. It should reflect your vision statement as best as possible. It can be done indoors or outside.

No older photographs or legacy images, and no pulling from the archives. You have nearly two weeks to get your vision statement and image made.


Author: Don Giannatti

I have been a photographer, art director, creative director and designer for nearly 40 years. The experience both behind the camera and behind the desk hiring photographers has given me a unique set of tools for working with photographers. Project 52 grew out of a frustration with the boards and forums that seem to be more about personalities than the actual work of being a commercial photographer. I am not famous, and I have no aspirations to be... but I know what the hell I am talking about.

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